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Arkansas Senate Race Shaping Up to Be Long and Expensive

LITTLE ROCK, Ark. -- The race for one of Arkansas' two U.S. Senate seats is already in full swing 15 months from election day.
Courtesy: KARK

LITTLE ROCK, Ark. -- The race for one of Arkansas' two U.S. Senate seats is already in full swing 15 months from election day.

But how closely voters are paying attention to Sen. Mark Pryor, D-Arkansas, and Rep. Tom Cotton, R-4th District, more than one year out from the election remains to be seen.

KARK spoke with people at the downtown Little Rock post office on Thursday to get a glimpse at how closely voters are paying attention to the advertisements already running.

"Not really at this point. It seems a little early to me," Lara Shock of Little Rock says.

But local florist Ted Lewis says he understands why both Cotton and Pryor are starting now.

"For the amount of people they have to cover for the state of Arkansas, well for the Senate, you've got to get out early," Lewis says.

The Pryor campaign launched a one minute television advertisement against Cotton the day before the freshman congressman announced he was entering the race.

The conservative political action committee Club For Growth followed with a thirty second television spot a day later targeting Pryor.

At the groundbreaking for an ammunition plant in Lonoke on Thursday Pryor says he had not watched the most recent ad against him.

"We know that these outside groups are just going to pour money into Arkansas," Pryor says. "I'm ready for that, I wish that wasn't the way politics were but that's what we're stuck with right now."

Cotton spent Wednesday and Thursday crossing the state meeting with voters to kickoff his campaign to unseat Pryor.

During his Tuesday announcement in Dardanelle, Cotton smiled when asked if he's worried about voters growing tiresome of seeing himself or his competitor for 15 months.

"Well the voters vote in May and again in November so they have plenty of time to weigh their options," Cotton replied.

One option could include not paying close attention.

People coming and going at the post office mentioned the start of school and the upcoming Razorbacks football season as top of mind issues right now.
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